Bukit Aman: Rape threat complaint not viewed as a joke

Deputy Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani. -filepic

KUALA LUMPUR: The Home Ministry will be calling up two media agencies to explain their recent headlines regarding Deputy Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani’s statement on investigations into a student’s complaint over a rape threat.

Citing inaccuracy, the ministry rebuked the two media agencies over their reports published on April 26 which claimed Acryl Sani as having said that the rape threat might be a joke.

“We view the matter very seriously. They will be summoned soon to give an explanation and other information pertaining to those reports, ” it said in a statement yesterday. Bukit Aman too stressed that not a single aspect of the investigations into the student’s complaint over the rape threat was viewed as a joke by the police.

Inspector-General of Police secretariat corporate communications representative Supt Skandaguru Anandan said media accountability was greatly needed to avoid creating wrong public perceptions.

In a statement yesterday, Supt Skandaguru said that Acryl Sani responded to questions from a reporter during the press conference at the Selangor police headquarters on Monday.

He said Acryl Sani’s response according to audio transcripts was: “As of now, I was informed the student has lodged two reports. The first was linked to what she felt was an improper approach by the teacher.

“Secondly yesterday, she also made an additional report connected to ‘may be a joke’ remark by one of her classmates which she could not accept. However, both reports have been combined into one investigation as it involved one locality and we are taking statements from those at the scene.

“We have already taken statements from the school teacher. We have also taken statements from the complainant and our investigating officers are now in the midst of taking statements from the classmates which will become supporting statements so that we can refer it to the Attorney General’s Chambers, ” said Acryl Sani on Monday.

Supt Skandaguru said “may be a joke” in the response statement to the reporters’ question was the aspect being investigated and it does not mean the issue to be “just a joke” as portrayed by the two media portals.

“The headlines of both reports are very confusing as they gave an inaccurate picture of the true statement made during the press conference, ” he said.

“It is an irresponsible act which can cause community anxiety, taint the credibility of police investigations and raise negative speculation against the victim in the case.”

Supt Skandaguru said there was not one aspect of the case which was viewed as a joke and the police took every report lodged seriously and always gave commitment to conduct a thorough investigation.

“Media accountability in reporting such cases is greatly needed to avoid the community forming wrong perceptions before the investigation process is concluded, ” he said.

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